Accidental trips and falls can have serious outcomes for older Australians and they happen with frightening regularity: in any given year, about 1 in 3 people over 65 have a substantial fall.
Elite Carpet Cleaning was shocked to learn that falls are the leading cause of injury-related hospital admissions for people over 65 in Australia.
But we take heart in mounting independent evidence that shows carpet is the best choice of floor covering for seniors.
Steve Dury, Elite Carpet Cleaning’s Bathurst-based franchisee, keeps himself well-informed on the issue of seniors’ safety and carpets: about half of his clientele are seniors living in their own houses, retirement villages or aged care facilities.
“Environmental features are really important for falls prevention,” Steve Dury says.
“I don’t like seeing mats or rugs on vinyl or tiled surfaces when I enter elderly clients’ homes: they can be a slip waiting to happen.”
So what are some of the advantages of carpet for older people’s wellbeing?
1. Softer landing
“A fully carpeted room provides a softer, more yielding surface that may reduce the severity of a fall – as long as you don’t knock your head on the corner of a coffee table or similar on the way down!” says the ever-practical Steve Dury.
The Australian Association of Occupational Therapists cites a study that evaluated flooring types in relation to injuries from falls. Of 225 accidents, only 27 fell on carpet: 4 were injured. This compared with 187 falls on vinyl that resulted in 91 injuries.
2. More confident walkers
The way we walk – our gait – changes as we age. Research has found seniors walk with more assuredness and less small-step shuffling on carpet than on slippery surfaces like vinyl.
3. Energy saver
Steve Dury’s franchise region in NSW Central West can get chilly – and older people often feel the cold more. Carpet can help save energy as it insulates the indoors and provides a psychological feeling of warmth too.
But doesn’t carpet require cleaning upkeep?
Carpet does need vacuuming which can be arranged for seniors receiving home help.
Carpet is very good at trapping dirt and dust to improve air quality – which is very important for seniors dealing with respiratory illnesses. That build-up needs to be removed safely. That, and the hygienic element, are reasons for calling on professionals like Elite Carpet Cleaning at least once a year.
And if there’s been ‘an accident’ of a bodily fluid type, Elite Carpet Cleaning can be called in for a hygienic spot clean. For thorough professional care of carpets, call Elite Carpet Dry Cleaning on 131 580. We’re happy to give a quote.